Manitoba Historical Society
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MHS Resources: Manitoba Bricks and Blocks: Melita Lumber and Manufacturing Company / Melita Brick and Tile Company

A directory of brick-making in Manitoba

A directory of block-making in Manitoba

People involved in brick and block-making in Manitoba

A glossary of terms relating to bricks and blocks

In 1905, John Dobbyn established a brick yard near Melita. The octogenarian formed a joint-stock company named the Melita Lumber and Manufacturing Company, with his sons Richard John Dobbyn and Charles S. Dobbyn, to exploit a site with excellent brick-making clay deposits. They brought in a Winnipeg brick expert by the name of McDonald to run the yard. He had previously managed a brick yard in St. Boniface and had been in the brick business since he was a young boy. The Dobbyn yard produced its first bricks, bright red in colour, by mid-June 1905 and produced at least two more kilns of brick that summer. Little is known about the Dobbyn yard in 1906 other than the fact that a D. Morrison of Sudbury, Ontario was now managing it. However, by the spring of 1907, Dobbyn already had an order for 1,000,000 bricks to be shipped to Regina, Saskatchewan. The plant turned out 20,000 bricks per day in 1907 and had one more additional order for 500,000 bricks by late May. In 1909, Ted Skyed became the yard foreman and business for Dobbyn was good until the clay bed became exhausted in 1910.

Some of the structures made with bricks made at this brickyard included:





Odd Fellows Hall

111 Main Street, Melita



Melita Winter Vault

Municipality of Two Borders




Manitoba Brick Yards by Randy Rostecki, Manitoba Historic Resources Branch Report, May 2010.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 8 August 2021

Leary Brickworks

Manitoba Bricks and Blocks

A history of the manufacture of bricks and concrete blocks in Manitoba, based on research by Randy Rostecki for the Manitoba Historic Resources Branch and supplemented by information compiled by Gordon Goldsborough of the Manitoba Historical Society. .

Bricks | Blocks | People | Glossary

We thank Hugh Arklie, Gordon McDiarmid, and Heather Bertnick for their help in the development of this online guide. Financial support of the Thomas Sill Foundation is gratefully acknowledged. Additional information was provided by Ina Bramadat, David Butterfield, Neil Christoffersen, Frank Korvemaker, Ed Ledohowski, Ken Storie, Lynette Stow, and Tracey Winthrop-Meyers.

© 2010-2020
Randy Rostecki, Manitoba Historic Resources Branch, Gordon Goldsborough, and Manitoba Historical Society.
All rights reserved.

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